Boycotts are up.  Where you advertise matters.

Those are two of the findings of a recent Civic Science poll.  The results show that the number of people boycotting products they use to buy as a result of where the ads ran has grown from 22% of US adults in 2017 to 28% in 2018.  That’s more than quarter of Americans who say they are currently boycotting a product.

The number of people saying they have boycotted a product rose from 39% to 48%.

“In today’s polarized media landscape, boycotting is one way for consumers to feel that their voice is heard. Beyond voting in elections, voting with your dollar (or your eyes) can be a way to express dissatisfaction in the actions of others. Seeing a boost in this behavior over the year only goes to show that the US population is working to have their voices heard, in whatever way they can.” – Emily Diehl, Civic Science

Civic Science Ad Location Trust

John Dick, Founder & CEO of Civic Science said advertisers are walking around on landmines.  They see people choose news content based on political orientation and respond negatively to advertisers that spend money on media that run counter to their own political beliefs.

He told Spot N Dots that the safe bet for advertisers worried about this is going local.  Local TV and newspapers were found to be unbiased by 39% of those surveyed compared to 15% for network newscasts or cable TV.

“The local TV or newspaper consumer is significantly less likely than consumers of other news to boycott a brand and view that advertising placement as something toxic or a reason to walk away from a product. We can expect this trend of tribalism and boycotting to only get worse before it gets better—which is why my money is on local TV and newspapers to survive that trend.” – John Dick, Founder & CEO, Civic Science in Spots N Dots

Data shows that trust in local news is highest among Gen Z.  He says that local TV and newspapers, if they can deliver the promise of trust to Gen Z consumers, could be gaining readers and viewers for the rest of their lives.